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Ten Different Health Benefits Of Marijuana, Why Would You Not Want This Medicine?

Posted on02. Sep, 2015 by .


10. Treatment of Glaucoma

If you are one of the millions who have been suffering from glaucoma, then smoking marijuana can help you get the best eyesight and relieve pressure from they eyes. Intraocular pressure can increase in certain individuals, especially those who have diabetes. Glaucoma is serious disease that can cause blindness.

9. Manage Epileptic Seizures

People who suffer from epileptic disorders or seizures can get tremendous relief and relaxation from smoking marijuana.

8. Pain Reliever

Marijuana ingestion can benefit your health when used to lessen the pain of MS, Rheumatoid arthritis and migraines. Also those sufferers of HIV, amputation, alcoholism and spinal surgery who are experiencing nerve pain seem to have a lessening of their pain when they are on a medical marijuana treatment protocol.

Marijuana, in the 2010 Canadian study, was found in these patients to be many more times more effective then aspirin in limiting their perception of pain. Medicinal marijuana is administered in more controlled dosages, and strengths that is found on the street. It is a stated goal of physicians to “do no harm.” The lessening of a patient’s pain, represents the epitome of this goal.

7. Prevents the Spread of Cancer

There is a chemical found in marijuana that has been shown to inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Researchers believe the process is that cannabidiol turns off the Id-1 gene. Cancer cells duplicate this gene in higher numbers than non-cancerous cells.

Researchers also studied breast cancer cells in the lab that contained Id-1 in high quantities. They were treated with cannibidiol. The result of this treatment was a lower incidence of Id-1 and the remaining genes were found to be less invasive.

There have been studies done in the US, Spain and Israel that posit that chemicals in marijuana can actually mean the death of cancer cells.

6. THC Reduces the Growth of Alzheimer’s

THC can help to slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. A study from 2006 found that chemicals in this drug can help keep amyloid plaques from forming. This will help keep you from getting this disease, and legalizing this drug could have everything to do with finding a cure.

5. Reduces the Spread of HIV

Cannabis is highly regarded in the medical community for it’s effectiveness in treating patients with HIV. People who have contracted the disease suffer from weight loss and body aches amongst other many things however, a new research that suggest cannabis might be able to halt the spread of the disease altogether has come to light. Additionally, a study was conducted in Louisiana; in this research scientists gave a daily dose of THC to primates who had contracted an animal form of the HIV. Over the course of the study, scientists found that the damage to immune system in the primates’ stomach had decreased.

4. Relieves Arthritis Pain

Marijuana will help with rheumatoid arthritis pain, swelling and allow them to have restful sleep .According to a 2011 study, where a cannabis based pain killer was given to rheumatoid arthritic patients, there was a marked decrease in observable pain, compared to the administration of a placebo.

Rheumatoid arthritis can be an extremely debilitating disease, striking the joints of the affected patients. The subsequent swelling causes a reduction in the range of motion. But this kind of arthritis is different than osteoarthritis, the kind one gets with old age. RA is an autoimmune disease, meaning in effect your body is attacking healthy cells. Any age group can get it, and any gender, but women are stricken the most.

3. Slows Metabolism, Helps with Weight Loss

Another use for medicinal marijuana is stimulating appetite. Recent studies by the National Cancer Institute indicate that the inhalation of cannabis can lead to an increased consumption of calories. Conversely, studies published in the American Journal of Medicine suggested that pot smokers are skinnier than the average person. They studied their levels of the hormone insulin and their blood sugar levels, and even though marijuana users consume more calories, they tend to have a healthier metabolism and a better reaction to sugars. The study analyzed data from more than 4,500 adult Americans – 579 of whom were current marijuana smokers, meaning they had smoked in the last month. About 2,000 had used marijuana in the past, while another 2,000 had never used the drug.

2. Calms Tremors in Parkinson’s Patients

Research has shown for patients suffering from the debilitating disease Parkinson, smoking pot can help reduce pain and tremors. It has been show to increase sleep quality as well as improving fine motor skills. Much of this research has been conducted in Israel.

Being able to release muscle tension, is another benefit of medical marijuana. A study done by the American Cancer Society shows that patients suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS), who used a liquid form of cannabis, encountered a reduced in muscle spasms as well shaking.

Another study done on eight MS patients, in advanced stages, showed a reduction in tremors and muscle stiffness.

1. Helps Veterans Afflicted with PTSD

Marijuana is a safer and less harmful alternative to traditional PTSD treatment. The relaxing effect marijuana has on the user without the fuzzy mental state caused by antidepressants can allow soldiers to relieve their anxiety without having to feel medicated. Antidepressants and other drugs prescribed for PTSD possess a high risk for addiction and are not recommended for use over long periods of time. Marijuana use can fluctuate, wane, or increase depending on the state of the patient with little no side effects based upon the amount of usage. There are no conclusive studies that indicate marijuana is addicting in the traditional sense of drug addiction such as substances with opiates. Marijuana may be the safest anti depressant on the market.

News Moderator: Jacob Redmond 420 MAGAZINE ®
Full Article: Ten Health Benefits of Marijuana
Author: Marc Howard
Photo Credit: MGN News
Website: Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies


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New Hope for Casualties of Georgia’s Failed Prohibition Policies

Posted on31. Aug, 2015 by .


Georgia has begun releasing marijuana and other drug offenders who were sentenced under the state’s harsh sentencing laws. The new law allows those facing life sentences for illicit sales to be considered for parole. Unfortunately, it doesn’t apply to those facing sentences just for possession.

Following adoption of a misguided “get tough on crime” campaign in the 90’s, many Georgians found themselves in horrifically long prison terms for nonviolent offenses, including the sale of marijuana. Journalists with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution found that black people were an astonishing 26 times more likely to receive life sentences than were whites under these laws.

For many, the war on marijuana seems to be winding down. But for those who languish in prison under long sentences, the war could mean a life sentence.

Darion Barker (Photo: Bob Andres)

The first person to benefit from the new law was Darion Barker, sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole for sale of marijuana and other drugs. Officials released him in July after serving 20 years.

But while the new law is a major step forward, there is more to do. Others just like Darion remain behind bars, many for lesser charges, including marijuana possession. If you are a Georgia resident, please ask your representative and senator to include those subject to long prison sentences for possession to be eligible for parole like Darion.

The post New Hope for Casualties of Georgia’s Failed Prohibition Policies appeared first on MPP Blog.

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Michigan Official Rejects Autism as Qualifying Condition for Medical Marijuana Program

Posted on30. Aug, 2015 by .


On Thursday, a Michigan official denied an application to add autism to the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana in the state.

Detroit Free Press reports:

The decision followed three years of efforts by parents of autistic children, their lawyers and supporters to have Michigan become the first state to specify that marijuana could be used to treat autism.

Mike Zimmer, appointed in December as director of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs — LARAlara — said he was concerned that an approval would apply not just to serious cases of autism but to all cases. And he said that parents applying to use medical pot would need the approval of two medical doctors, yet there was no requirement that either doctor be experienced in treating autism.

No state specifically allows medical cannabis for autism, although California and Washington, D.C., allow using the drug for any condition that a medical doctor believes it may help, said Karen O’Keefe, director of state policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, a nonprofit group that favors legalizing marijuana.

A bill that would broaden Michigan’s medical marijuana act to allow other forms of medical pot — House Bill 4210, sponsored by state Rep. Lisa Posthumus Lyons, R-Alto — has been in the House Judiciary Committee since February, after a similar bill failed to pass last year.

While this is disappointing, it does provide a road map of sorts for a successful application next time. Hopefully, autism sufferers will soon be able to access medical marijuana in Michigan.

The post Michigan Official Rejects Autism as Qualifying Condition for Medical Marijuana Program appeared first on MPP Blog.

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Chile Is About To Decriminalize Marijuana

Posted on28. Aug, 2015 by .


With its proposed changes to Ley 20.000 (Law 20,000), Chile joins a growing list of Latin American countries decriminalizing marijuana. The initiative, which would grant Chileans the right to possess up to 10 grams of cannabis and grow up to six marijuana plants at a time, was passed in Chile’s Chamber of Deputies on July 7 with 68 voting in favor and 39 against. The bill must first be adjusted by a health commission and then passed by the Senate before it officially becomes law, but strong support for cannabis legalization in the country illustrates that legalizing marijuana use appears to be the new norm in the Western Hemisphere and, once again, that the War on Drugs has been a failed campaign.

Support For Legalization

The future of legalization is most apparent in the opinion of Latin American young adults on the War on Drugs. In a 2012 poll of 18 to 34-year-olds in the region by Asuntos del Sur (Southern Affairs), 79 percent of Chileans “voiced strong approval” for legalization, 52 percent disapproved of government campaigns attempting to reduce drug use, and 54 percent did not support current government policies on drugs.

In Chilean society at large, those in favor of legalizing the use and cultivation of pot are also in the majority. Fifty percent of Chileans are in favor while 45 percent are against, according to a 2014 poll carried out by Cadem, a Chilean market and public opinion investigation company. When polls address the legalization of medical marijuana, this figure skyrockets to 86 percent in favor. These numbers are especially significant when one considers that Chile is one of the more socially conservative countries in South America and indicate that support for legalization is becoming a mainstream opinion, rather than a progressive pipe dream.

So far, it is legal to smoke marijuana with varying restrictions in Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Jamaica, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay. After creating a legal marijuana market in 2013, Uruguay in particular has been deemed a “trailblazer” on this issue. However, there have been delays in implementing the government-regulated system. In March, the Spanish newspaper El País reported that cultivating the drug had become legal in Uruguay and that an estimated 2,000 people had enrolled in the official register, a slower registration rate than originally expected. One factor slowing implementation of the law in Uruguay is concern surrounding the safety of marijuana on the part of some pharmacy chains in the country.

Responding To Questions Of Health And Safety

In Chile, safety has also become a central argument against marijuana decriminalization. In the days after the measure passed in Chile’s Chamber of Deputies, the right-leaning newspaper La Tercera published article after article about safety concerns related to decriminalizing the drug. In one article published on July 11 titled, “Doctors Warn [the Public] About the Risks of Consuming Marijuana,” President of the Chilean Society of Pediatrics Luis Felipe González was quoted saying, “In the framework of the publication of the National Study of the Consumption of Drugs and the debate underway about the legislative change regarding the use and production of cannabis, the Medical Societies of Chile are taking note of our concerns about the significant increase of marijuana consumption, especially in young people and the harm that it brings them and society.” He went on to say that the initiative proposed by Congress is counterproductive, since it will only add to these risks.

The following day, the same publication posted an article in which Jo McGuire, director of the U.S. based Drug and Alcohol Testing Industry Association, updated the newspaper on the current status of marijuana legalization in Colorado and suggested that Chile is not ready for decriminalization. McGuire somberly declared, “We are still waiting to see something positive come out of the decriminalization of marijuana” in Colorado. She asserted that the number of people dying in car accidents who tested positive for marijuana use had increased after the state legalized medical marijuana in 2001. She also pointed out that marijuana causes addiction in one out of six young people and one in 10 adults and that the recent legalization has caused an increase in the number of marijuana users in the state.

McGuire is correct in saying that marijuana use has increased since it was legalized for recreational purposes in 2012 via Colorado Amendment 64. One in every eight Coloradans over the age of 12 say they have used marijuana in the last month, making it the state with the second highest percentage of regular cannabis users, after Rhode Island. However, the increased usage is not as negative as McGuire makes it out to be, and her comments regarding traffic fatalities are misleading.

The medical marijuana industry in Colorado is now a tightly regulated retail industry, and the sales from this industry are taxed by the Colorado Department of Revenue. The majority of the funds coming from this tax, which in October 2014 totaled more than $ 40 million USD, go toward marijuana use prevention programs for youth and general mental health programs. According to Art Way of the Drug Policy Alliance, this system is already having positive effects: A year after legalization, there was actually a decline in the number of young people using marijuana in the state.

McGuire’s other claim that more people are dying in car accidents due to marijuana use is deceptive since the only way to test for marijuana in someone’s system is through the presence of marijuana metabolites, which can linger in the body for days or weeks after first using the drug. Therefore, this test is not entirely accurate in that it cannot determine whether the person in question has actually smoked that day or not and, therefore, does not prove that marijuana was the cause of these accidents. In fact, roadway fatalities are at near-historic lows in Colorado and have actually decreased since marijuana was legalized.

Taken in broader context, the situation in Colorado proves that cannabis use has not created the treacherous atmosphere that McGuire and other critics insist it generates. Although it is important to be cautious about this kind of psychoactive substance, the consumption of cannabis is actually less damaging to an adolescent’s health than the consumption of alcohol, according to Ibán Rementería, a member of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the Central University of Chile. The legal drinking age is 18 in Chile, and in 2014 the World Health Organization found that Chile had the highest rate of alcohol consumption per capita in Latin America. If alcohol is a normalized part of Chilean society and marijuana legalization does not appear to have the chaotic implications that opponents assert, then there are few negative arguments left regarding cannabis decriminalization. In fact, the consequences of not decriminalizing this drug are even more dangerous.

Why Chile Should Pass This Measure

As in the case of Colorado, one of the benefits of decriminalization is the ability to enact prevention programs that demystify cannabis smoking and provide for education rather than incarceration. As Rementería emphasizes, such programs make marijuana use safer, since they offer alternatives to the drug for young users or suggest how to reduce sanitary risk. Also, if marijuana were decriminalized, the government would be able to regulate the sanitary quality of the drug, a crucial benefit, since, “the majority of diseases and deaths associated with its consumption are due to the toxicity of its additives.”

A third benefit of decriminalization is perhaps the most significant. Rementería asserts that it “distances users from illicit markets with their risk of violence, criminalization, and fraud.” Chile certainly does not suffer from the same violence linked to the drug trade that Central America or Mexico experiences; from 2007 to 2012, 48,000 people were killed in drug-related violence in Mexico alone. By contrast, Chile, with a rate of 3.1 per 100,000 habitants, has the lowest number of homicides of any country in Latin America.

At the same time, Chile incarcerates a high percentage of its population for drug-related offenses. Between 1993 and 2008, Chile’s imprisoned population grew by 238 percent, and Chile’s rate of detainees per 100,000 habitants in 2008 was 305, well above the global average incarceration rate (145) and that of South America overall (154). Among crimes that result in imprisonment, drug trafficking results in the third highest rate while the “Ley 20.000 microtrafficking control” results in the fifth highest rate. Regarding gender differences in jail sentencing, the majority of female inmates are imprisoned due to drug trafficking. If the proposed change to Ley 20.000 is passed, Chile could make great strides in reducing its prison population, while helping to prevent some of the thousands of deaths that plague its neighbors throughout the Hemisphere. Although Chile is not in the thick of the drug trade, its proposed actions could well provide a model for curbing the crippling violence and hardship the illegal drug trade has perpetuated.

Mexico and Portugal As Models

While decriminalizing marijuana is a step in the right direction, ultimately the only way to completely break the cycle of drug violence that pervades the Western Hemisphere is to eliminate illegal markets for all drugs. Consumers in the United States alone spend over $ 100 billion USD on illicit drugs each year, with $ 41 billion USD being spent on marijuana. This leaves about $ 59 billion dollars being spent on drugs in the United States alone, yet campaigns to decriminalize these drugs have gained very little traction in the Hemisphere when compared to marijuana. According to José Miguel Insulza, former secretary general of the Organization of the American States and Chilean by birth, “Marijuana is a special case.*edit* It is the most consumed by far and probably the least damaging from a health point of view.”

However, there are signs that the social stigma around decriminalizing hard drugs is starting to change. Since 2009, individuals in Mexico can no longer be prosecuted for possessing small amounts of pot and other drugs for personal use.*edit* The government only takes note of incidents of drug possession and provides the users with information regarding treatment options.

Portugal is widely seen as the biggest success story in drug decriminalization. Since 2001, possession and use of small quantities of any kind of drug have been treated as a public health issue. As in Mexico, anyone found with a drug is referred to a treatment program instead of being put in jail. The results have been astounding. Drug use is down, especially among young adults, and new HIV cases have plummeted due to health programs that have been instituted in the country. In addition, Portugal touts the second lowest rate of drug overdose deaths per 1 million people in the European Union. While Christopher Ingraham of The Washington Post points out that there could be other factors at work here in achieving these positive results, he also argues that Portugal’s example certainly weighs against the idea of keeping all drugs illegal.

A Call To Action

The favorable results in countries and states, such as Portugal and Colorado, that have successfully begun to decriminalize marijuana and other drugs will be key to influencing the final decision on whether to regularize the use of cannabis in Chile. As can be seen in the articles written on this story by La Tercera, the main opponents of this step have distorted facts about legalization in Colorado and have used health and safety statistics that do not accurately reflect what decriminalization could mean in a society. Therefore, those in favor of this measure must actively promote the benefits of decriminalization while warning of the dangers of unsanitary practices and the drug violence that will continue if action is not taken. Although allowing the use of marijuana in one country will not solve all of the problems associated with the War on Drugs, if Chile does pass the proposed changes to Ley 20.000, it could advance the movement of Latin American countries and states in the United States taking action to end the status quo.

News Moderator: Jacob Redmond 420 MAGAZINE ®
Full Article: Chile Is About to Decriminalize Marijuana | Alternet
Author: Olivia Marple
Contact: Contact | Alternet
Photo Credit: Reuters
Website: Alternet | Alternative News and Information


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